SMM OSCE is ready to open patrol bases in territories temporarily not controlled by the Ukrainian government upon receiving necessary security guarantees. “We do have plans, and we are ready to open additional patrol bases. […] So far, we have not received sufficient guarantees from those in effective control of the territories to enable us to open these bases. […] They have been budgeted for, and we are ready to open them at any point as soon as we get those guarantees,” Alexander Hug, Principal Deputy Chief Monitor of the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission to Ukraine, said via Skype from Debaltseve at Ukraine Crisis Media Center.
Last week, SMM OSCE met with the Chief of the Ukrainian General Staff. “The mission has clarified its methodology to the Ministry of Defense and Chief of the General Staff in order to ensure that our reports are being read with clarity, and not misunderstood,” Alexander Hug said.
As of today, SMM OSCE has 641 monitors, of whom 562 are deployed to the East. In addition, there are 356 Ukrainian colleagues and 89 other international staff working for the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission.